Our second day we decided to hit the Saturday market, which was actually pretty impressive. Ofc they got tons of things you don´t even know what it is but if you take time there are absolutely a good chance to find some real goodies. Both Michelle and I walked back home with a dress and a jacket!
First day in Marbella and I am feeling blessed. It´s closer to 25 degrees in the sun and wearing a pair of jeans was probably not the very best idea. We decided to start our day with a big breakfast at the cafe organics which serves the most amazing food and juices. Not a very typical Spanish breakie but we got a whole week to try out all different types of dining. We´re staying at Michelle´s grandmother´s place and the complex is quiet fancy, yet stunning. It´s located between old town of Marbella and Puerto Banus. It´s possible to walk to both towns along the beach which is to prefer. We decided to spend the rest of our day down town Marbella strolling around the old town, sipping wine and eating olives. It´s a pretty little area, although I think it might be a little too busy for my taste during the high season. But at this time of the year, in early November it is just perfect.
So beside strolling around down town Nazaré there is a lot of sightseeing around the area. A "not to miss" is the lighthouse which is located on the hill above Nazaré. If you stand on the beach and turn north you ill see the look out. It is possible to get there by the local train or if you feel confident by foot. I drove which took me about five minutes. Church of Nossa Senhora is something different, spectacular in other words. I am not usually spending a lot of time admiring these type of sightseeing, but this church was something else no doubt. So please, if you end up going there make sure to take a minute to step inside one of the most beautiful places on earth.
So, where to begin.... Nazaré might or might not be as beautiful as I want to explain it. Either way there is something about the place that is breath taking. It is pure, so pure it is almost impossible to take it all in. I am not sure if it´s fair of me to try to explain the town in words without feeling like I am giving the beauty away. Nazaré is more of a place to see and feel yourself. I think I am going to leave it that way, and if any of you want any particular tips then just hit me up.
So.... As scrolling through my photos looking to find any from the time I spent in Peniche and Baleal I realised that either I did not take any pictures or I lost them all? It might be both, because even if I wasn't very active with the camera during this stay cause of the great waves I know I still have captured some photos..? Anyway, the very first photo is from one of the beaches in Penich. It was a beach break right there, to the left hand side of the harbour, that was just pumping lefties! That´s also why I am looking so exhausted.. As you can tell. The rest of the photos is not taken by me, but I thought it was only fair to give you at least a hint of what the place looks like...
So Penice, I don´t know how to define the place because it´s too big to be called a town and too small to categorised as a city.... So I guess it´s something in between, if you guys get what I mean by that? Some parts of it, close to the harbour is pretty popularised. There are restaurants, shops etc. meant to please the tourists needs. Although a bit further away from that, on the other side of the town, it´s completely different. There you can only find a local market and maybe a store store selling everything but what you can possibly need. So if going to Peniche make sure you are on the right side of the town.
Baleal is a little area right outside Peniche. It´s like a little island itself, and to get there you drive between the two beaches that stretches along both sides of the road. Baleal is tiny, but still offers good places to eat and stay. If you got a car than go for a drive around. We found one breakfast spot maybe a two minute drive from the heart of Baleal that had the most amazing bread rolls!! It´s a must eat.
Where to even begin..... I fell deeply in love with this place, so head over heels that I told everyone that I was never going to leave. Unfortunately I had to, but my plan is to move back here one day. I don't know when, but I am hundred precent certain I will. So just to tell you guys before you read the next part I might be a little blind with love, although I am going to try to be as fair as possible.
Santa Cruz, my true love, is a beach town still untouched by tourists around the world. There is not much going on in this town although I have a feeling it soon will. The coast line is incredible, as you can tell of the photos above. All you can see when you face the water is the horisont that stretches from one end to the other. The town is build above the water, on a cliff wall, which makes the scene more dramatic and outstanding. Along the very edge of the cliff the locals have build a what I would call it "beach walk" out of bricks. While walking there I felt like I was walking on clouds. The people in the town is mainly locals but also tourists from other parts of Portugal. There is nothing like a "surf set-up" in this town, even if the beach offers some really good waves. If you got no board, too bad for you. I should probably not say you are totally screw because just a little outside the town there is a recently opened surf house where I spent my nights. Its four local guys, who I got to be really good friends with, that bought a house together and decide to open up a surf camp. It was the beginning of their start up when I visited but of what I`ve heard it´s going really well! Which is amazing! So if you are going to Santa Cruz thats the place to stay, probably the only one too. hahah!
Hit me up for further questions!
Also, the croissants we bought at the local bakery that you find if you walking through the town towards the statue. No street names sorry, but I´m sure if you looking for it you´ll find it!
So while in Encinitas we chose to drive down to Cascais and also the beach Praia do Guinco. As I´ve mentioned before there is a lot to see in Portugal and I don´t see any better way to get around than to rent a car. Then you get there quick and you can also stop where ever you want on the way. I can´t say much about the busses but of what I´ve heard it´s kind of a hazel. If you are worrying about to drive in the traffic than please stop, there is no better feeling than to actually feel that you are adapting to their way of driving. I´ve been driving in so many different countries now and yes it might be a little tricky at first but when you starting to get a head of it and understand the way they drive in that specific place then it´s like driving back home. In Portugal it´s a lot of small streets and sometimes it´s difficult to even know where you suppose to drive, but people there are so patient that I even think they enjoy spending time in a traffic jam. So embrace it, enjoy the challenge and make sure you check it off your bucket list!
Back to what I actually was suppose to write about - Cascais! Small town, very touristy at some parts and very quiet at others. I loved it, but was definitely fine with only spending half a day there. The tourists was not the type of people I like hanging around when I am out traveling, they were kinda of comparable with the tourists you can find in some parts of Spain. Loud, annoying and no sense of other people. Either way there is a way to still enjoy the beauty of Cascais and that is to walk a little further from the harbour. The "side streets" to say. Because the town in it self is just too picturesque. There is so much to find and fall in love with along the stroll, like a little coffee shop runed by grandpa himself, or a fruit market or a tiny little fish restaurant where they only serve the catch of the day, literally anything you could think of. We stopped at a few places where one of them was an espresso house (locals only drink espresso in Portugal). It was only place to sit outside because inside the cafe every spot was taken by either the grandkids of the owners or grandpas playing chess. We also went to a fish-burger place where they served the most amazing fish burgers and wine from a local vineyard. (you can see photos from both places above)
Before heading to Cascais we drove to Praia Do Guinco which was a beach I´ve discovered through some surfers I follow on instagram. It was a huge beach. Usually there is some good waves to catch here but I was unfortunately unlucky by the time. Although I didn't mind watching all kite-surfers having a good time instead. Whats not great about this place is the payed parking, it´s not expensive and you get drinks including the price, but it also means it´s kind of a discovered place already. If you get what I mean? I like getting to places where there is no business going on and you can just get amazed by mother nature herself. But either way it´s worth visiting, because the drive there was awesome.
Again, I could go on forever but I guess it would've been pretty exhausting for you guys to read all of it. So if you got any further questions then give me a shoot!
Ok, so our first stop was Encinitas which is located like an hour more or less north of Lisbon. It is a tiny little beach town where lots of surfers (other tourist aswell) comes every year to enjoy the good atmosphere Encinitas has to offer. During summer the swell is really small which is kind of the case everywhere in Europe, but there are still some waves to find and if not you can always get on a paddle board and cruise around the bay. Be aware tho that the water temperature is nothing like spain, france, greece etc. It is freezing, literally. If you wanna go for a casual swim you should head south instead, but I tell you more about southern Portugal later. Anyway, if you are planning to surf just make sure you bring a wetsuit.
Encinitas has a little downtown which is more like a big platform surrounded with restaurants and shops (mainly surfshops). I did not like to spend too much time right there in the middle of it, mainly because I am not a big fan of the kind of vibe a "set up town" gives. Although what I did really enjoy was to stroll around the other part of the town. Which is the area around the "platform". As I said before it is not very big so practically you could see the whole place in an hour. But if you are more like me who stopps at every cute looking house to embrace it and take photos you´ll get it done by a day or so, maybe two days to be fair. Because there is ALOT of cute building, churches, gardens etc.
We stayed here three nights in total and I think that was quiet enough. Buddha hostel is a great place to spend ur nights at, it is right by the beach and near down town as well. You got a parking lot right outside which is great if you got a car. ( free parking ) Near the hostel you got 4 ( and more depending how far you want to walk/drive) different surf spots, mainly point breaks but also a couple beach breaks, one really good one right out front. Foz do Lizandro is one beach worth visiting, it´ sa two minute drive south of the town. Lot´s of local kids comes here everyday to enjoy their lunch-box at the beach. Even if it´s a fair bit of people here it still feel so calm and quiet, don´t ask me how because I really don´t know. If there is a good swell coming in the beach break can offer some really good waves as well. And if you forgot your board that day you can easily rent one on the spot. Make sure to also enjoy a coffee at Limipicos beach cafe where you can lay down in the couch at the same time you can see ocean is right beneath you.
I´ve tried to sum up most of it in a not too long text. If you got more questions about something more specific than don´t hesitate to contact me either here or email. firstname.lastname@example.org
So, I was spending about three weeks in Portugal this summer and it was too great to be true. First thing first, we rented a car which is to prefer when most places worth visiting is very spread out. When I say worth visiting I am not saying everywhere else where I did not spend any time is "unworthy" visiting, far from! Cause all spots in Portugal is just too beautiful and if I have had more time there I would've made sure I saw it all. But right now I am just going to focus on what I´ve actually seen and where I´ve been. I am thinking it might be easier if I make one post per place, then you can easily choose if you want to read about them all or just a couple. Hope that´s ok for you guys... anyway! Let´s get started! Next up - Encinitas!
So after having lots of people asking me about traveling tips to different places (which I LOVE btw), I´ve decided to actually put some work down and write all my tips I have here. Cause even if I absolutely love talking about my trips and giving people advices it takes time, especially when I can go on forever and ever..... So instead of giving each one of you guys a headache I am now getting to say everything I want and you can choose what you want to listen to or not. Think that is a pretty good deal.